Stuffing can be made inside the turkey or in a baking dish, with or without meat, using cornbread or an alternative like rice or quinoa to make it gluten-free. However you cook it, it’s a welcome addition to the dinner table. This year, give it a Hawaiian twist by using alternative ingredients like Hawaiian sweet bread, Chinese sweet sausage, and pineapples. Ginger, boursin garlic and herb cheese, cilantro and scallions complement the sweeter elements and add a burst of flavor unlike traditional stuffing recipes. Chef Vargas suggests drying out the sweet bread the night before you cook the dish so the bread will soak up more of the bright flavors. If you prefer, fresh pineapple can be substituted with a can of diced pineapples; just be sure to drain the syrup before adding it to the other ingredients. When cooking, the baking dish should be covered in aluminum foil, but removing it in the last 10-15 minutes will add a nice crunch to the top.
Hawaiian Sweet Bread Stuffing
Yield 12 servings
1 pound Chinese sweet sausage, sliced
3 tablespoon canola oil
1 stick unsalted butter
2 cups chopped yellow onion
1 cup chopped celery
1 tablespoon poultry seasoning
2 teaspoons minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced ginger
12 cups cubed 1-inch Hawaiian sweet bread, dried out
1 cup small dice fresh pineapple (may substitute for a can drained diced pineapple)
1 pack boursin garlic herb cheese
1/2c mozzarella shredded cheese
2 cups chicken broth
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
½ cup chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons finely chopped scallions
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1. Pre heat oven 350 degrees
2. Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat and add in the canola oil and butter and let it melt. Add in the onion, celery, ginger, garlic and Chinese sausage and cook until the vegetables are soft, about 5 to 6 minutes.
3. Add the poultry seasoning and cook for 2 more minutes.
4. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl and add the sweet bread cubes,chicken broth, beaten eggs, parsley, cilantro, scallions, pineapples, boursin garlic herb cheese, mozzarella cheese salt, pepper. Using a wooden spoon, stir to thoroughly combine.
5. Using a pan non stick spray coat the sides and bottom of a baking dish and transfer the bread mixture to the buttered baking dish.
6. Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the foil very carefully after 30 minutes and return the baking dish to the oven and continue to bake until top of stuffing is golden brown and slightly crispy, about 10-15 minutes longer.